Manufacturing report a good startThe Australian Forest Products Association welcomes the recent findings and reform agenda of the Prime Minister’s Manufacturing Taskforce report, but does not underestimate the challenges involved for improving the regulatory environment of doing business in Australia.
Chief Executive Dr David Pollard said; "A lot of work has gone into this report and the wood and paper products industry supports the commitment by government to lift productivity growth, innovation and skills development. These factors, along with the high dollar, are holding back manufacturing competitiveness."
"We are also encouraged by moves to look more closely at corporate taxation rates, national energy market reform to deliver lower prices to energy users, ameliorating the impacts of the carbon price for energy-intensive businesses in the current environment and stronger anti-dumping measures. These factors would go a long way to addressing some of the key issues impacting now on the wood and paper products industry", said Dr Pollard.
The Australian wood and paper products industry, which makes such things as office copy paper, tissues, newspapers and timber building products is a large manufacturer in Australia. The industry represents nearly seven per cent of manufacturing value added and contributes to the social fabric of many regional communities.
"While recognising the Manufacturing Taskforce report is a good start, we repeat calls from industry for strong national leadership and a bold approach to addressing some of the fundamental issues confronting the manufacturing sector."
Many similar recommendations were made as part of the Pulp and Paper Industry Strategy Group (PPISG) report released in 2010. This Group, which involved industry, researchers and unions with support from key Government agencies, highlighted a strategy for removing policy impediments and promoting growth opportunities for pulp and paper manufacturing.
AFPA is looking forward to working collaboratively with the Australian Government on their response to the pulp and paper industry report, which is expected shortly.
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